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Thursday, November 03, 2005

Cat Killer 


I already linked to this in an earlier post, but this is a fun analysis of Bill Frist through quotes and photos. I've gotten in the habit of reading Bag News Notes pretty regularly, and on some occasions it's remarkable.

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Torture Tangles 


It's no secret that we do not know whether we know about secret prisons. But if secret, would laws -- not secret -- banning torture apply to them or would they secretly not apply? And who's to say whether they exist or not if the secret's a secret? Assuming they're a secret, can public laws be secretly ignored?


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Who Cares About Romania, Anyway? 


The EU cuts its teeth.
he European Commission said today it will investigate reports that the CIA set up secret jails in eastern Europe to interrogate al-Qaida captives.

Separately, Europe’s top human rights organisation, the Strasbourg, France-based Council of Europe, said it too would try to see whether the claims were true.

According to the report, a covert prison system was set up by the CIA nearly four years ago which at various times included sites in eight countries, including Afghanistan and several eastern Europe nations. It quoted current and former intelligence officials and diplomats as sources for its story.

Several European nations issued firm denials about the existence of such prisons.

“I repeat. We do not have CIA bases in Romania,” the country’s prime minister, Calin Popescu Tariceanu, said today. EU member Hungary’s foreign ministry said it was never approached by the CIA and therefore there was no need for the government to carry out any separate inquiries.

I mean, what a bunch of babies. Puh-lease! Would someone please explain to me what business it is of the European Union's whether or not we set up extra legal torture camps in and around their continent?!


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The Center Cannot Hold 


As we all understand the new political paradigm to be, Right is Center, Radical is Right, and there is no Left. Nonetheless, labels are fun and easy to useTM, and Fat Men own media empires and, well, that's just the way it is.

Which brings us to the Gang of 14, the bipartisan group that agreed they'd work together to keep Republicans from disbanding the filibuster, one of the foundations of senatorial procedure for centuries. A couple members of this camp have already defected with the nomination of Samuel Alito, and the declawing has begun.
"I'm very favorably disposed toward" Alito, said Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., "but the process that we set up, the 14 of us, is going to be followed, and that's periodic meetings and evaluations."

But two senators — Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. and Mike DeWine, R-Ohio — already have said they will join with Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., to eliminate the filibuster for judges if Democrats launch this delaying tactic simply because of Alito's conservative record.

I am amazed more and more that these people can even walk and eat, being totally crippled, as they are, by arrogance and myopia. It does not seem like a good time to use the nuclear option (braining the filibuster), what with the spearhead being investigated for fraud and the President's approval ratings at one degree above shit-canned.

But, this will not stop them. In fact, they're more likely to invoke it since they can, I believe, sense their own demise, smell it like sulphur on their fingertips, drip-dripping small splashes of urine almost imperceptibly down their chalky white and hairless legs, and they feel the urgency in placing a conservative on the bench.

I'm talking about Republicans here.

My favorite syntactical/ironical part is how the Gang of 14 agreed somehow that it would take "extraordinary circumstances" around a nominee to prevent the nuclear option, which is, inandofitself, a very fucking extraordinary circumstance. Just how bad a nominee warrants these circumstances? (I promised someone not to parallel bad people with baby-eaters, so I'll leave the rest to you.)

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Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Balls 


Maybe it's just the timing of things, but Harry Reed so far seems to be exceeding my expectations. And, with his decision to call a special, closed session of the Senate today, we see he's got much better media chops than Tommy Daschle ever did.
Invoking a rarely-used rule, Democrats temporarily shut down television cameras in the chamber, cleared galleries of tourists and other onlookers, forced removal of staff members and recording devices and stopped work on legislation.

"At its core, this is about accountability -- congressional accountability and White House accountability," said Sen. John Rockefeller of West Virginia, top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Republicans, it goes on to say, were indignant.

Well that's fucking terrific! Get indignant! Just saying you're indignant isn't going to get you very far, not when your President is pissing his pants, your majority leader is under investigation and your leadership in the House is out on bail. I'm afraid there's not much sympathy available when you're threatening to abolish a cornerstone of Senate procedure, the filibuster. I'm afraid your -- here come two big H words -- hypocrisy and hubris are starting to eat away at your underwears.

I also read on Democratic UNderground that Reid intends to hold closed sessions every day until Republicans agree to open an investigation into prewar intelligence. Go, Harry, Go!


PS. I've been busy editing a short for Channel 102, and have been pretty busy these last few days. I'll be sure to keep you updated.

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